Google has purchased Makani Power, a company it had been investing in from its inception. The US based company will be the latest addition to Google’s ever-growing research and development department. The price which Google has paid for buying Makani has not been revealed but it is rumored that Google is going to provide the resources the company needs for developing its existing and new projects. This is not the first time that Google has bankrolled Makani’s projects.
However, this time the difference is that Google now owns the company. Previously, Google had invested at least $15 million in the company to enable it to carry out its initial experiments. Among the exciting projects that enter Google’s domain following this deal is the kite-powered generator designed by Makani. It has been in development for quite some time at the company and they are preparing to test it in the near future. Google’s acquisition is bound to have been influenced by this project.
The project involves using turbines to generate powers that are mounted on top of wings or tethered kites. In the test itself, the turbines are going to be placed atop robot kites and the company will check whether the experiment delivers the results they are looking for. Already, Makani has carried out tests of its product using a smaller prototype, which generated around 30 kW of power. Their aim is to have kite-powered generators produce at least 600 kW power.
According to Makani, they want to make sure that the turbines are able to propel the turbines without requiring a person to maneuver the system. They are going to develop larger models of their product once the initial testing is over. The company also stated that it wants to price their project competitively, around the same price as charged by offshore wind farms.
[Image via mitenergyconference]